7:84

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7:84 was a Scottish left-wing agitprop theatre group. The name comes from a statistic, published in The Economist in 1966, that 7% of the population of the UK owned 84% of the country's wealth (compare the Pareto principle).

The group was originally founded by playwright John McGrath, his wife Elizabeth MacLennan and her brother David MacLennan in 1971, and operated throughout Great Britain. In 1973, it split into 7:84 (England) and 7:84 (Scotland). The English group folded in 1984, having lost its grant from the Arts Council of Great Britain.[1] The Scottish group lost its funding from the Scottish Arts Council in 2006, though Artistic Director Lorenzo Mele successfully secured funding for a further year from April 2007.[2] He subsequently commissioned a series of four plays, Wound by Nicola McCartney, Eclipse by Haresh Sharma, A Time To Go by Selma Dimitrijevic, and Doch-An-Doris (A Parting Drink) by Linda McLean. Together, these short plays formed Re:Union, a production which toured Scotland in early 2007. This was followed in September 2007 by Raman Mundair's The Algebra of Freedom, which also toured extensively throughout Scotland. This production was directed by 7:84's Associate Director, Jo Ronan, and designed by David Sneddon.

On 31 December 2008, the Scottish company ceased trading, citing "the changing funding structures in Scottish theatre."[3]

Touring productions[edit]

Although much of its work centres on outreach projects throughout Scotland, 7:84 was principally known for its touring productions. The following table contains details of all 7:84's major productions that toured nationally.

Show Director Writer Date
The Algebra of Freedom Jo Ronan Raman Mundair 5 September - 6 October 2007
Re:Union Lorenzo Mele & Jo Ronan Selma Dimitrijevic, Nicola McCartney, Linda McLean & Haresh Sharma 11 April - 5 May 2007
Free-Fall Lorenzo Mele Christopher Deans 16 February - 8 April 2006
Borderland Lorenzo Mele Andrew Doyle 22 September - 5 November 2005
Tipping Point Lorenzo Mele Davey Anderson 6 June - 3 July 2005
Boiling a Frog Lorenzo Mele Christopher Deans (based on the novel by Christopher Brookmyre) 3 February - 2 April 2005
Private Agenda Lorenzo Mele N/A 2 September - 23 October 2004
Reasons to be Cheerful Stuart Davids Martin McCardie 19 February - 10 April 2004
Gilt Zinnie Harris Stephen Greenhorn, Rona Munro & Isabel Wright 2 October - 9 November 2003
Can't Pay? Won't Pay! Andy Arnold Dario Fo 6 February - 22 March 2003
Factory Girls Guy Hollands Frank McGuinness 3 October - 9 November 2002
Cave Dwellers Gordon Laird Nicola McCartney 14 February - 23 March 2002
The News at When...? Gordon Laird N/A 23 November - 22 December 2001
Marching On Gordon Laird Gary Mitchell 29 March - 12 April 2001
A Little Rain Gordon Laird Peter Arnott 22 September - 5 November 2005
24 Hours Iain Reekie Frances Corr, Deirdre Heddon, Jess Kerr, Ernie Kyle, Frank Shields, Rhiannon Tise 16 March - 22 April 2000
Caledonia Dreaming Iain Reekie David Greig 6 June - 19 July 1999 and later revived at the 1999 Edinburgh Festival
Dissent Iain Reekie Stephen Greenhorn 5 November - 6 December 1998
Valley Song Natalie Wilson Athol Fugard 19 May - 14 June 1998
Tongues Andrew Dawson, John Heraghty, Natalie Wilson 11–28 February 1997
Angels in America Iain Reekie Tony Kushner 29 March - May 1996
Born Guilty Iain Reekie Peter Sirchrovsky 27 April - 18 June 1995
The Salt Wound Jim Culleton Stephen Greenhorn 21 September - 5 November 1994
The Grapes of Wrath Iain Reekie Frank Galati 25 February - 1 March 1994
Twilight Shift Iain Reekie Jackie Kay 6 October - 7 November 1993
Phoenix Iain Reekie Roy MacGregor 11 May - 20 June 1993
Sophocles' Antigone Iain Reekie Dan Taylor 23 February - 27 March 1993
The Lament for Arthur Cleary Iain Reekie Dermot Bolger 14 October - 21 November 1992
Scotland Matters Iain Reekie John Binnie, Iain Heggie, Liz Lochhead, Ann-Marie Di Mambro, Gurmeet Mattu, Rona Munro & Jimmy Reid 12 May - 6 June 1992
Jump the Life to Come Iain Reekie Noel Greig 6 February - 15 March 1992
The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui Roanna Benn Ralf Manheim / Bertolt Brecht 4 October - 4 November 1991
Revolting Peasants Gerard Kelly Patricia Prior 14 May - 15 June 1991
Bold Girls Lynne Parker Rona Munro 27 September - 17 November 1990
Govan Stories Roanna Benn 2–25 May 1990
When The Wind Blows Gerard Kelly Raymond Briggs 25 August - 7 October 1989
Road David Hayman Jim Cartwright 8 May - 3 June 1989
The Sash Gerard Kelly Hector MacMillan 24 January - 25 April 1989
Long Story Short Finlay Welsh Donald Campbell, James Graham, Tom Leonard, Aonghas Macneacoil, Ann Marie Di Mambro, Gureet Mattu, Rona Munro, Ricky Ross and Ann Samuel 28 February - 31 March 1989
No Mean City Alex Norton David Hayman 24 May - 16 July 1988
Mairi Mhor - The Woman from Skye John McGrath John McGrath 2 September - 17 October 1987
The Gorbals Story David Hayman Robert McLeish 6 May - 20 June 1987
There is a Happy Land John McGrath John McGrath 25 April - 7 June 1986
Beneath One Banner David Maclennan Sean McCarthy 13 February - 5 April 1986
The Incredible Brechin Beetle Bug John Haswell Matt McGinn 3 December - 16 January 1986
High Places John Haswell Ena Lamont Stewart 13 March - 16 May 1985
The Albannach Finlay Welsh John McGrath 28 February - 26 April 1985
In Time of Strife David Hayman Joe Corrie 7 May - 15 June 1984
The Baby and the Bathwater John Haswell John McGrath 19 October - 8 December 1984
The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists David Hayman Archie Hind 8 May - 9 June 1984
The Clydebuilt Season 10 February - 15 May 1982
Gold in his Boots John McGrath George Munro
Johnny Noble David Scase Ewan MacColl
Men Should Weep Giles Havergal Ena Lamont Stewart
One Big Blow John Burrows John Burrows 1981
The Catch John McGrath John McGrath 15 August - 7 November 1981
Blood Red Roses John McGrath John McGrath 18 August - 8 November 1980
Swings and Roundabouts 26th John McGrath John McGrath - 22 February March 1980
Joe's Drum Campbell Morrison John McGrath 21 May - 22 June 1979
Thought for Today David Maclennan Company collaboration 10 February - 16 March 1977
Honour Your Partners David Maclennan David Maclennan 27 January - 10 April 1976
Little Red Hen John McGrath John McGrath 16 September - 13 December 1975
The Cheviot, the Stag, and the Black Black Oil John McGrath John McGrath 31 March - June 1973

Notable performers[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ BBC NEWS | Scotland | Funding axed for theatre company
  2. ^ BBC NEWS | UK | Scotland | Glasgow and West | Reprieve for 7:84 theatre company
  3. ^ Announcement posted at http://www.784theatre.co.uk/. Cached page available http://www.webcitation.org/5pnoU9luB

External links[edit]